We have all been there. Deep in our feels post-breakup and turning to sad girl playlists to numb the pain. Well, alt-pop singer-songwriter George Morgan, aka The Beach, is here with a new heartbreak-fuelled track that will be a perfect fit for your next crying sesh. “Still In Love” is a display of pop perfection that draws inspiration from a tough breakup in a melodic way. The song itself, which was co-written and produced by Fyfe, is a juxtaposition as we hear raw and soul-bearing lyrics over upbeat and euphoric sounds.
“I feel like everything has to be as vulnerable and honest as possible otherwise you aren’t exploring yourself artistically, I want to write things that make me feel uncomfortable and that I wouldn’t even say to my friends and family,” explains Morgan.
After moving to his parents home in Dorset, and filling his long commutes to London with countless hours of musical exploration, the songwriter has a renewed sense of self and a drive to take the pop genre to new and exciting levels. Having found himself surrounded by the likes of Tom Odell and Kodaline in the past, all the while still working to perfect his songwriting, The Beach has a vast understanding of his craft and this could not be more evident in tunes he produces.
Read our interview below…
Hi George – how have you been during this uncertain time? How has it impacted your music and creativity?
Overall I’ve been good. It’s such a rare and interesting time. Having a stop and stand still moment really makes you look at yourself and assess your life, that’s pretty deep but that’s just how it is. I count myself lucky because I do something I love and I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else and this time has reassured that. But it’s interesting seeing people I know quit their jobs, break up their relationships and realising the way they were living isn’t how they want to live. There’s no hiding from yourself at this time that’s for sure.
Creatively I feel so lucky because I had my most prolific year as a songwriter in 2019 working with other writers and producers in London, which meant the last year has been applying the finishing touches to songs and getting them ready for release. When I came back to Dorset which I thought was going to be for a few months but has now been a year, I decided to take the time to improve on other parts of my musical life.
I studied musical theory, read books, learnt some classic songs and analysed my favourite songs. I also took time to educate myself on music, listened to the artists that influenced my favourite artists, for example I’ve listened to Prince’s whole catalogue on Spotify, The Bee Gees, Hall and Oates, to Chaka khan, to Whitney Houston, Boyz II Men, Fleetwood Mac, The Police, the list goes on…
I’ve been writing as well but not in the London session kind of way, which is turning up to a studio at midday and grinding a song out until around 7pm Monday to Friday. I just let things come as they wanted to and rediscovered music like a kid again.
How has growing up in Dorset influenced you sonically? Who are your biggest musical inspirations?
So I actually grew up in west London but my parents moved to Dorset when I was 17, I consider myself a Londoner through and through.
I guess having experienced both the hustle and bustle of the city and the space and tranquility of the country side I’ve been fortunate enough to have both influence my music. Being in a city has influenced my music in the way that I’m always trying to capture the feeling of escapism in melodies. Being in the countryside allows me the space and time to think clearly so I can hone in on my emotions a little more.
My inspirations have changed so much over the years, when I was learning to play acoustic guitar as a kid I was introduced to Nick Drake, Jack Johnson and James Morrison, but really I was a child of radio so I was influenced by whatever was big as I was growing up, Coldplay, Hozier, Ben Howard, The Script, Maroon 5, The Fray, One Republic, Ed Sheeran. It’s only in the last few years I listened to music made before 1995 which has led me to the artists I mentioned previously – Bee Gees, Prince, The Police, Fleetwood Mac, Sting et al. Spotify has been amazing for finding new inspirations.
Why the name The Beach?
There’s a beach on the south coast I would always go to in the winter when it wasn’t busy. The power of the natural forces always put my own tiny problems into perspective and chilled me out, provided an escape, so I’ve always been trying to capture that in my music.
Your music fuses alt-pop and acoustic – how would you describe your genre?
I’d say my genre is raw story telling with simple conclusion in the chorus, summarising the whole feeling as simply as possible, I guess I’m always searching for pop perfection.
You started out in the open-mic circuit in London – how do you think these live performances have fused into your storytelling?
Those nights dragging my acoustic guitar around the pubs and bars of London have been an integral part of my journey so far.
Not so much in story telling/lyrics but in melody writing and dynamics of a song, I learnt the hard way that if your melodies aren’t interesting you lose the crowd’s attention, my aim in those performances was to have someone look up from their pint glass or from their conversation and stay with me for the whole song. I can’t say I achieved this very much.
Congratulations on your new single “Still In Love”, which traces a sense of regret after the end of a relationship – what was the inspiration behind it?
Thank you very much, the inspiration was the experience I went through after a break-up. I did everything I could to forget about the person to the point of thinking I was over it until we bumped into each other at a mutual friend’s party and all these feelings came flooding back. It was clear I wasn’t over it at all.
How does it feel putting out something so raw and vulnerable?
I feel like everything has to be as vulnerable and honest as possible otherwise you aren’t exploring yourself artistically, I want to write things that make me feel uncomfortable and that I wouldn’t even say to my friends and family, so to answer your question I feel naked but that’s the only way it can be.
What do you hope your music brings at such a time of uncertainty?
I’ve always been a selfish writer in the way that it’s all for me, if other people relate to it then that’s amazing but the best way I can bring anything to others is to make sure the music brings me something first. This music brings colour/vibrance and edge to my life so if it does for other people then great.
What’s next for you? What are you looking forward to in 2021?
Well after this EP I’m hoping to release more songs and try and keep a flow of music going out into the world. In 2021 I’m looking forward to collaborating with writers and producers in person rather than over Zoom, and it would be great to see some mates and lose the anxiety of thinking I’m walking around in the midst of a deadly virus.